ApprentishipNC – passed earlier this year in NC Senate Bill 257





SECTION 15.13.(c) Chapter 115D of the General Statutes is amended by adding a

37 new Article to read:

38 “Article 1A.

39 “ApprenticeshipNC.

40 Ҥ 115D-11.5. Purpose.

41 The purposes of this Article are to open to young people the opportunity to obtain training

42 that will equip them for profitable employment and citizenship; to set up, as a means to this

43 end, a program of voluntary apprenticeship under approved apprentice agreements providing

44 facilities for their training and guidance in the arts and crafts of industry and trade, with parallel

45 instruction in related and supplementary education; to promote employment opportunities for

46 young people under conditions providing adequate training and reasonable earnings; to relate

47 the supply of skilled workers to employment demands; to establish standards for apprentice

48 training; to coordinate workforce education and customized training tools to fill talent pipeline

49 gaps, as appropriate, with local business and industry; to establish an Apprenticeship Council

50 and apprenticeship committees and sponsors to assist in effectuating the purposes of this

51 Article; to leverage the collaborative and regional structure of the community college service

1 areas with the Collaboration for Prosperity Zones set out in G.S. 143B-28.1; to provide for a

2 Director of ApprenticeshipNC within the Community Colleges System Office; to provide for

3 reports to the legislature and to the public regarding the status of apprentice training in the

4 State; to establish a procedure for the determination of apprentice agreement controversies; and

5 to accomplish related ends.

6 Ҥ 115D-11.6. Apprenticeship Council.

7 The State Board of Community Colleges shall appoint an Apprenticeship Council

8 composed of four representatives each from employer and employee organizations respectively

9 and three representatives from the public at large. One State official designated by the

10 Department of Public Instruction and one State official designated by the Department of

11 Commerce shall be a member ex officio of the council, without vote. The terms of office of the

12 members of the Apprenticeship Council shall be designated by the State Board. Any member

13 appointed to fill a vacancy occurring prior to the expiration of the term of his or her

14 predecessor shall be appointed for the remainder of the term. Each member of the Council not

15 otherwise compensated by public moneys, shall be reimbursed for transportation and shall

16 receive such per diem compensation as is provided generally for boards and commissions under

17 the biennial maintenance appropriation acts for each day spent in attendance at meetings of the

18 Apprenticeship Council. The State Board of Community Colleges shall annually appoint one

19 member of the Council to act as its chair.

20 The Apprenticeship Council shall meet at the call of the State Board of Community

21 Colleges and shall aid the State Board and the Community Colleges System Office in

22 formulating policies for the effective administration of this Article. The Apprenticeship Council

23 shall establish standards for apprentice agreements which in no case shall be lower than those

24 prescribed by this Article, shall recommend rules and regulations to the State Board of

25 Community Colleges as may be necessary to carry out the intent and purposes of this Article,

26 and shall perform other functions as the State Board of Community Colleges may direct. Not

27 less than once a year the Apprenticeship Council shall make a report through the Community

28 Colleges System Office of its activities and findings to the legislature and to the public.

29 Ҥ 115D-11.7. ApprenticeshipNC.

30 The State Board of Community Colleges is hereby directed to appoint a Director of

31 ApprenticeshipNC, which appointment shall be subject to the confirmation of the State

32 Apprenticeship Council by a majority vote. Upon the recommendation of the Director, the State

33 Board of Community Colleges may appoint and employ clerical, technical, and professional

34 help as necessary to effectuate the purposes of this Article. The Director shall supervise

35 clerical, technical, and professional staff appointed to administer the ApprenticeshipNC

36 program.

37 Ҥ 115D-11.8. Powers and duties of Director of ApprenticeshipNC.

38 The Director, under the supervision of the President of the North Carolina Community

39 College System or the President’s designee and with the advice and guidance of the

40 Apprenticeship Council, is authorized to administer the provisions of this Article; in

41 cooperation with the Apprenticeship Council and apprenticeship committees and sponsors, to

42 set up conditions and training standards for apprentice agreements, which conditions or

43 standards shall in no case be lower than those prescribed by this Article; to act as secretary of

44 the Apprenticeship Council; to approve for the Council any apprentice agreement that meets

45 the standards established under this Article; to terminate or cancel any apprentice agreement in

46 accordance with the provisions of the agreement; to keep a record of apprentice agreements and

47 their disposition; to issue certificates of completion of apprenticeship; and to perform other

48 duties as are necessary to carry out the intent of this Article, including other on-the-job training

49 necessary for emergency and critical civilian production. The administration and supervision of

50 related and supplemental instruction for apprentices, coordination of instruction with job

1 experiences, and the selection and training of teachers and coordinators for the instruction is the

2 responsibility of State and local boards responsible for career and technical education.

3 Ҥ 115D-11.9. Apprenticeship committees and program sponsors.

4 (a) As used in this Article:

5 (1) “Apprenticeship agreement” means a written agreement between an

6 apprentice and either his or her employer or an apprenticeship committee or

7 sponsor acting as agent for employers, which agreement satisfies the

8 requirements of G.S. 115D-11.11.

9 (2) “Apprenticeship committee” means those persons designated by the sponsor,

10 and approved by the Apprenticeship Council, to act for it in the

11 administration of the apprenticeship program. A committee may be “joint,”

12 i.e., it is composed of an equal number of representatives of the employer

13 and of the employees represented by a bona fide collective bargaining agent

14 and has been established to conduct, operate, or administer an apprenticeship

15 program and enter into apprenticeship agreements with apprentices. A

16 committee may be “unilateral” or “nonjoint” which shall mean a program

17 sponsor in which employees or a bona fide collective bargaining agent is not

18 a party.

19 (3) “ApprenticeshipNC” means the statewide apprenticeship program

20 administered by the Community Colleges System Office in accordance with

21 this Article.

22 (4) “Apprenticeship program” means a plan containing all terms and conditions

23 for the qualification, recruitment, selection, employment, and training of

24 apprentices, including such matters as the requirement for a written

25 apprenticeship agreement.

26 (5) “Employer” means any person, firm, corporation, or organization employing

27 an apprentice whether or not such person, firm, corporation, or organization

28 is a party to an apprenticeship agreement with the apprentice.

29 (6) “Sponsor” means any person, firm, corporation, organization, association, or

30 committee operating an apprenticeship program and in whose name the

31 apprenticeship program is approved.

32 (b) An apprenticeship committee may be appointed by the Apprenticeship Council in

33 any trade or group of trades in a city or trade area, whenever the apprentice training needs of

34 the trade or group of trades justifies such establishment.

35 (c) The function of the apprenticeship committee, or sponsor when there is no

36 apprenticeship committee, shall be to cooperate with school authorities in regard to the

37 education of apprentices; in accordance with the standards set up by the apprenticeship

38 committee for the same trade or group of trades, where a committee has been appointed, to

39 work in an advisory capacity with employers and employees in matters regarding schedule of

40 operations, application of wage rates, and working conditions for apprentices and to specify the

41 number of apprentices which shall be employed locally in the trade under the apprenticeship

42 agreements under this Article; to adjust apprenticeship disputes, subject to the approval of the

43 Director; to ascertain the prevailing rate for journeymen in the city or trade area and specify the

44 graduated scale of wages applicable to apprentices in the trade in that area; to ascertain

45 employment needs in the trade or group of trades and specify the appropriate current ratio of

46 apprentices to journeymen; and to make recommendations for the general good of apprentices

47 engaged in the trade or trades represented by the committee. An apprenticeship committee may

48 appoint a representative and delegate to the representative the authority for implementation and

49 performance of any standards adopted by the committee pursuant to any of the aforementioned

50 functions.

51 Ҥ 115D-11.10. Definition of an apprentice.

1 The term “apprentice” means a person at least 16 years of age who is covered by a written

2 apprenticeship agreement approved by the Apprenticeship Council, which apprenticeship

3 agreement provides for not less than 2,000 hours of reasonably continuous employment for the

4 person for his or her participation in an approved schedule of work experience and for

5 organized, related supplemental instruction in technical subjects related to the trade. A

6 minimum of 144 hours of related supplemental instruction for each year of apprenticeship is

7 recommended. The required hours for apprenticeship agreements and the recommended hours

8 for related supplemental instruction may be decreased or increased in accordance with

9 standards adopted by the apprenticeship committee or sponsor, subject to approval of the State

10 Board of Community Colleges.

11 Ҥ 115D-11.11. Contents of agreement.

12 Every apprentice agreement entered into under this Article shall contain:

13 (1) The names of the contracting parties.

14 (2) The date of birth of the apprentice.

15 (3) A statement of the trade, craft, or business which the apprentice is to be

16 taught, and the time at which the apprenticeship will begin and end.

17 (4) A statement showing (i) the number of hours to be spent by the apprentice in

18 work on the job and (ii) the number of hours to be spent in related and

19 supplemental instruction, which is recommended to be not less than 144

20 hours per year. In no case shall the combined weekly hours of work and of

21 required related and supplemental instruction of the apprentice exceed the

22 maximum number of hours of work prescribed by law for a person of the age

23 of the apprentice.

24 (5) A statement setting forth a schedule of the processes in the trade or industry

25 division in which the apprentice is to be taught and the approximate time to

26 be spent at each process.

27 (6) A statement of the graduated scale of wages to be paid the apprentice and

28 whether the required school time shall be compensated.

29 (7) A statement providing for a period of probation of not more than 500 hours

30 of employment and instruction extending over not more than four months,

31 during which time the apprentice agreement shall be terminated by the

32 Director at the request in writing of either party, and providing that after the

33 probationary period the apprentice agreement may be terminated by the

34 Director by mutual agreement of all parties or canceled by the Director for

35 good and sufficient reason. The Council at the request of a joint apprentice

36 committee may lengthen the period of probation.

37 (8) A provision that all controversies or differences concerning the apprentice

38 agreement which cannot be adjusted locally in accordance with

39 G.S. 115D-11.9 shall be submitted to the Director for determination.

40 (9) A provision that an employer who is unable to fulfill his or her obligation

41 under the apprentice agreement may with the approval of the Director

42 transfer the contract to any other employer; provided, that the apprentice

43 consents and that the other employer agrees to assume the obligations of the

44 apprentice agreement.

45 (10) Any additional terms and conditions as may be prescribed or approved by

46 the Director not inconsistent with the provisions of this Article.

47 Ҥ 115D-11.12. Approval of apprentice agreements; signatures.

48 No apprentice agreement under this Article shall be effective until approved by the

49 Director. Every apprentice agreement shall be signed by the employer, or by an association of

50 employers or an organization of employees as provided in G.S. 115D-11.13, and by the

51 apprentice, and if the apprentice is a minor, by either of the minor’s parents, or by any person,

General Assembly Of North Carolina Session 2017

Page 288 Senate Bill 257 S257-PCCS55079-MLxfr-2 [v.11]

1 agency, organization, or institution standing in loco parentis. Where a minor enters into an

2 apprentice agreement under this Article for a period of training extending into his or her

3 majority, the apprentice agreement shall likewise be binding for a period as may be covered

4 during the apprentice’s majority.

5 Ҥ 115D-11.13. Rotation of employment.

6 For the purpose of providing greater diversity of training or continuity of employment, any

7 apprentice agreement made under this Article may in the discretion of the Director of

8 ApprenticeshipNC be signed by an association of employers or an organization of employees

9 instead of by an individual employer. In this case, the apprentice agreement shall expressly

10 provide that the association of employers or organization of employees does not assume the

11 obligation of an employer but agrees to use its best endeavors to procure employment and

12 training for the apprentice with one or more employers who will accept full responsibility for

13 all the terms and conditions of employment and training set forth in the agreement between the

14 apprentice and employer association or employee organization during the period of each

15 employment. The apprentice agreement in this case shall also expressly provide for the transfer

16 of the apprentice, subject to the approval of the Director, to such employer or employers who

17 shall sign in written agreement with the apprentice, and if the apprentice is a minor with his or

18 her parent or guardian, as specified in G.S. 115D-11.12, contracting to employ the apprentice

19 for the whole or a definite part of the total period of apprenticeship under the terms and

20 conditions of employment and training set forth in the agreement entered into between the

21 apprentice and employer association or employee organization.

22 Ҥ 115D-11.14. Limitation.

23 Nothing in this Article or in any apprentice agreement approved under this Article shall

24 invalidate any apprenticeship provision in any collective agreement between employers and

25 employees that sets up higher apprenticeship standards. None of the terms or provisions of this

26 Article apply to any person, firm, corporation, or crafts unless, until, and only so long as the

27 person, firm, corporation, or crafts voluntarily elects that the terms and provisions of this

28 Article apply. Any person, firm, corporation, or crafts terminating an apprenticeship agreement

29 shall notify the Director of ApprenticeshipNC.”

30 SECTION 15.13.(d) Notwithstanding G.S. 115D-11.6, as enacted by this section,

31 the current members serving on the Apprenticeship Council pursuant to G.S. 94-2 as of July 1,

32 2017, shall serve the remainder of their terms. Thereafter, as terms expire, or when a vacancy

33 occurs prior to the expiration of a term, members of the Apprenticeship Council shall be

34 appointed by the State Board of Community Colleges in accordance with G.S. 115D-11.6, as

35 enacted by this section.

36 SECTION 15.13.(e) Within 90 days of the date this act becomes law, the

37 Department of Commerce shall submit a Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act State Plan

38 amendment to the United States Department of Labor to designate the Community Colleges

39 System Office as the State agency responsible for the administration of ApprenticeshipNC as

40 provided for in this section.